Ealing Bridge

The Ealing Bridge, constructed predominantly from timber except for tie bars and carriage beam end bearing plates, spans 18 meters across the Grand Union Canal in Northolt, connecting a housing estate to green space and offering a valuable local amenity. Initially a simple 3-pin arch design, the addition of tie bars, later removed, was prompted by Ealing Borough Council’s request to modify the gradient for disabled access. The bridge’s carriage beams were cut from a single large boxed heart Oak section, curving gracefully.

Installed as an entire structure, except for decking boards and balustrade, the bridge served as its own scaffold for completion. A pedestrian perspective reflects the pleasant walking experience it provides. Despite initial concerns over fire safety, the bridge’s oak construction proved resilient during an arson attempt. Following damage during the Tottenham riots of 2011, skilled restoration was conducted, preserving its integrity. Precise fabrication drawings showcased meticulous design.

To accommodate varying tolerances, an adjustable bearing plate was incorporated, ensuring successful assembly within a week despite the bridge’s substantial span. This project stands as a remarkable example of a large single-span public timber bridge in the UK, combining functionality, aesthetics, and resilience.

Builder: Linbrook Services Ltd

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